Tag Archives: climategate

Exoneration fails to appease conspiracy theorists, cont’d, cont’d, cont’d

Image courtesy of Flickr user "Jennoit", used under Creative Commons

The National Science Foundation’s Inspector General office has completed its inquiry into allegations of misconduct leveled at Penn State climate scientist, RealClimate blogger, and “hockey stick” lead author Mike Mann. Yet again, Mann was cleared of all allegations of misconduct. And, yet again, this does nothing to dissuade the paranoid conspiracy theorists that fancy themselves “skeptics” but who are anything but.

As always, Conspiracy Theory 101 dictates that when an investigation fails to confirm your tin foil nuttery, it can only mean that the investigation was illegitimate and part of the conspiracy. Previous examples here, here, and here.

[UPDATELike clockwork...]

New study lays out 11 indicators of a warming world, media focuses on contrarian views

From time to time, journalists like Andy Revkin and Keith Kloor protest that the mainstream media doesn’t do an awful job covering the issue of climate change. They believe that the well-documented, systematic bias of undermining scientific conclusions by “balancing” them with contrarianism is behind us. Unfortunately, this is demonstrably false.

The above image is from the self-proclaimed “Most Trusted Name in News” CNN’s coverage of NOAA’s just-released 2009 State of the Climate Report, copy from The Financial Times. The State of the Climate report details how the planet is warming as captured by 11 different indices, from land surface temperature to glacial mass balance.

In the Financial Times article republished by CNN, equal if not more time is devoted to discussing the manufactured scandal over the stolen CRU emails and getting reactions from cranks like Steve Goddard and industry shills like Pat Michaels and Myron Ebell vs. covering the actual contents of the report itself.

The release of this report represented a huge opportunity for CNN and The Financial Times to explore the signs of a warming world in detail- perhaps to discuss with credible experts the causes and expected effects, to explain why specific humidity would be expected to increase in a warming world, or why Antarctic sea ice is not a representative indicator of enhanced greenhouse warming while Arctic sea ice is, etc. And who knows- perhaps they eventually will. For now, however, “most trusted name in news” is continuing to grossly mislead its audience because it simply can’t give up the outmoded narrative crutch of “balance”.

Exoneration fails to appease conspiracy theorists, cont’d, cont’d

Michael Mann has been unanimously cleared of the final accusation of wrongdoing by Penn State. Its full report is here.

In keeping with the tenets of Conspiracy Theory 101 (previous examples here and here), the panel’s findings were immediately dismissed as a “whitewash” by climate denialists, like CEI‘s Myron Ebell:

“It has been designed as a whitewash,” Ebell wrote in an e-mail. “To admit that Dr. Mann is a conman now would be extremely embarrassing for Penn State. But the scandal will not be contained no matter how many whitewash reports are issued. The evidence of manipulation of data is too obvious and too strong.”

Because as any good tinfoil hatter will tell you, when the investigation fails to confirm your pathological rejection of reality it can only mean that investigation is illegitimate.

[h/t John Mashey and Aaron Huertas]

UPDATE: Brian Angliss of Scholars and Rogues covered the “whitewash” nonsense back in February.

Exoneration fails to appease conspiracy theorists, cont’d

Second verse same as the first.

When the investigation fails to confirm your tin foil nuttery, it can only mean that the investigation was illegitimate. It’s conspiracy theory 101.

[First link fixed]

Betsy Kolbert is a national treasure

Image from Adam Borodach, IUP magazine

Read the whole thing, but the conclusion says it all:

The message from scientists at this point couldn’t be clearer: the world’s emissions trajectory is extremely dangerous. Goofball weathermen, Climategate, conspiracy theories—these are all a distraction from what’s really happening. Which, apparently, is what we’re looking for.

I don’t agree with everything in the piece (I’d say that cool weather in the US, but mainly the increased partisanship reflected in *all* polls and the economic concern still widespread in the US are probably more responsible than SwiftHack/climategate for the droopy poll numbers), but she certainly knows how to cut through the BS, doesn’t she?

H/t Phil Plaitt, whose post is worth a read itself.

UK inquiry exonerating Phil Jones fails to appease conspiracy theorists

Exoneration can only mean that the investigation was illegitimate. After all, in the eyes of denialists, the only legitimate reviews, investigations, etc. are the ones that reach the conclusions they want.

But then, you already knew that.

[UPDATE: See BigCityLib Strikes BackDeSmogBlog; Hot Topic; James Annan; Rabbet Run; RealClimate; Stoat for more.]

The emerging scientific consensus on the SwiftHack emails: get real, denialists

And of course the emails never have and never will impact the scientific basis of the reality of anthropogenic warming.

[h/t to DeSmogBlog for the IPCC statement]

[UPDATE: Via the comments, for more, see SwiftHack.com and CP under the "Hackergate" tag.]

[LATE UPDATE: More added as they come.]

SwiftHack meme watch: National Review edition

Following up on the very ARTIFICAL outrage post.

From the preeminent conservative media outlet the National Review, we’ve got a lovely demonstration of exactly what I was talking about. As I wrote (all following emphaeses mine):

The code in question appears to “test the sensitivity of certain calculations to the presence or absence” of the post 1960 divergence problem in Briffa’s MXD archive. It does not appear to have been used in any published paper, figure, or data set… In spite of this, if you’ll find claims that this bit of code is in fact… fabricated warming in the global surface temperature record

This post really is quite perfect, as it also cries “hockey stick”, which I also discussed:

It’s odd how some (sticky? viral?) memes propagate through the denialosphere. The classic example is how “hockey stick” lost all of its original context, and soon there was very little that was not a “hockey stick” according to the denialosphere: from the temperature projections in the AR4 to pre-industrial vs. current CO2 levels. And through an apparent belief in sympathetic magic, all it took was the labeling of something as a “hockey stick” in order to discredit it in the eyes of a certain audience.

These geniuses have no idea what they’re looking at, but they are convinced, absolutely convinced, that it’s undeniable proof of Something Nefarious.

CRU head Phil Jones stands aside for inquiry, further evidence of conspiracy and fraud

Here’s the update from CRU.

Think I’m wrong about people eventually claiming the latter? Just you wait.

The latest SwiftHack meme: ‘Apply a VERY ARTIFICAL’ outrage

It’s odd how some (sticky? viral?) memes propagate through the denialosphere. The classic example is how “hockey stick” lost all of its original context, and soon there was very little that was not a “hockey stick” according to the denialosphere: from the temperature projections in the AR4 to pre-industrial vs. current CO2 levels. And through an apparent belief in sympathetic magic, all it took was the labeling of something as a “hockey stick” in order to discredit it in the eyes of a certain audience.

The SwiftHack “scandal” is proving to be no different. “Hide the decline” has metamorphosed from the truncation of certain dendro proxy data post-”divergence”  into a fraudulent artificial inflation of, by turns:

  • the global surface temperature record
  • the US surface temperature record (occasionally with unrelated graphics of real NCDC adjustments)
  • GCM projections of future warming

And so on. They’re not really sure what it means, but they’re sure that it’s undeniable evidence of fraud and the global Gore-Commie conspiracy. It’s humorous to watch this spring up repeatedly in comment sections of forums and the like, as the reality-based community seems to be all over it. You can still see it popping up, but its “juice” has been diminished incredibly.

The latest (I’m sure as I write this something new is coming down the pike) meme concerns two nearly identical snippets of code in “briffa_sep98_d.pro” and “briffa_sep98_e.pro”, e.g. at RealClimate here and here, and addressed at Deltoid here. The code comments talked about “arifical” [sic] adjustments and “fudge factors”, and as such it is being taken as undeniable proof of Something Nefarious.

The code in question appears to “test the sensitivity of certain calculations to the presence or absence” of the post 1960 divergence problem in Briffa’s MXD archive. It does not appear to have been used in any published paper, figure, or data set. [Denialists can feel free to set me straight on that- you've got a fixed range in which the publication had to occur, the name of at least one coauthor, the archive it supposedly en-fraud-ulates, and a pretty good idea about what this adjustment will look like] In spite of this, if you’ll find claims that this bit of code is in fact:

  • “Mike’s Nature trick”
  • Phil Jones’s use of “Mike’s Nature trick”
  • fabricated warming in the global surface temperature record
  • fabricated warming in the US surface temperature record
  • fabricated warming inserted into the projections of GCMs

And so on.

I’m guessing that we can expect to this sort of thing repeated over and over and over again for weeks if not months to come. A line in an email, some snippets of code, etc. will be trotted out (completely excised of content) with no grasp of what it actually means as the newest Proof That Definitely Shows Global Warming Is Fake And We’re Serious This Time. The supporting evidence will be non-existent, the explanations of what the “proof” does will be incoherent and self-contradictory, but the confidence with which it will be paraded around will be unshakable. It will be the final nail in the coffin of radiative transfer the hippie scam.

Until the next one.